Lissemys – Southern Asia softshell turtles
Their shells are falsely believed to have medicinal value and are ground into powder for making traditional medicines
The genus Lissemys includes three freshwater flap-shell turtles native to South Asia. The femoral flaps on the plastron are responsible for the “flap-shelled” moniker. Turtles go inside their shells and use these skin flaps to conceal their limbs.
When seen from above, an adult turtle’s carapace is more circular, while a juvenile is more oval and widens immediately in front of the hind legs. There is no lateral ridge on the nasal septum, and the jawline is smooth. The nose is small and stocky. Both sexes have short, thick tails and massive, clawed paws.
Members of this genus eat just about everything. Their diet consists of amphibians, fish, shrimp, snails, aquatic plants, plant leaves, flowers, fruits, grasses, and seeds.